In this past school year, all of our cadets have demonstrated their ability to follow, listen, and understand other students among them. The program selected eight of our hardest-working cadets to attend Citadel's Leadership Academy and Command Course. These students include Thomas Sleasman, Mick Miller, Jeremy Meyer, Sarah Flemmer, Mia Naples, Joshua Young, Ashrae Keyes, and Maddie Piscopo. With their leadership training, we believe that all of them will become exceptional leaders within the unit and beyond.
Despite waking up at 05:00 each morning, instructors didn’t hesitate to put cadets through physical training. Students underwent a series of jumping jacks, Russian twists, situps, and other cardio exercises to prepare themselves for the rest of the day. After morning workouts, cadets took classes to learn about basic etiquette, ethics, orienteering, and leadership skills. Throughout the week, students applied this knowledge during room and uniform inspections, drill competitions, and orienteering courses. While instructors divided cadets into separate platoons, many students found it relatively easy to meet new people and make several friends. These connections help build trust, communication, and friendships that last a lifetime.
"My goal was to learn and take back information to the unit" - Sleasman
Leading up to graduation, cadets competed against each other during inspections, drill competitions, and various activities for the honor platoon. The LA instructors observed each group closely to determine which cadets performed the best during inspections, workouts, and classes. Even though the instructors firmly believed that every LA cadet had worked extremely hard, they had to select the top cadets for the honor platoon. As graduation finally arrived, cadets received a certificate and an aiguillette, a decorative uniform cord, for passing all portions of the academy. Following the award presentation, instructors were ready to announce the top ten graduating cadets and the honor platoon. After reviewing their decision, instructors confidently nominated the 4th platoon as the honor platoon for their outstanding leadership and dedication. As they continued to announce the results, Carolina Forest’s executive officer, C/LT Jeremy Meyer, placed among the top ten cadets of the Leadership Academy! We are immensely proud of all the cadets who attended this training. We hope that the younger generations will look up to these graduates to become excellent citizens in the future!
"Try new things, be involved” - Keyes
What Was Learned
Throughout the week, cadets faced challenges they’d never experienced before. Students had to learn to communicate with their peers, manage their time, and follow proper etiquette on the spot. The majority of students were able to figure out the training on their own, despite the unpredictable nature of the course. Cadets were able to understand the importance of followership, delegating powers, and building each other up. While the experience was mentally and physically exhausting, students who came out of LA became improved, sharper, and more determined individuals.
A leader isn’t an individual. Being a leader is how well you can get your people together, and how you use your traits and characteristics to better yourself and your followers." - Flemmer
Article written by C/ENS Klaire Heller
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